Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Consolidating Shops

I've been trying to split my efforts between my two blogs lately--this one where I typically share far too many details about our personal life and the blog on my professional Web site where until now I've posted primarily about work. But, I've realized that splitting my efforts has only led to sporadic posts on both sites!

So, in an effort to give one blog my full attention, I've decided to close up shop here. I'll start posting more about our family life at my Web site blog, www.mindylong.com/blog. I'm planning to focus that site on writing, reading and living (living will incorporate all those family posts that up until now have been missing from the site). I'm hoping to add some search features that will let you easily sort which posts you want to look at--you know, just in case you aren't interested in reading about running an at-home business. Hopefully it will all come together!

If you will--please follow me over to www.mindylong.com/blog, update your blogrolls and if you haven't added me to your blogroll yet, please do! In return, I'm going to do my best to resume my daily posting!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Ideas Please!

I want to do something special for Evan on the day he becomes a big brother. I already have his big brother shirt and I plan to get him a present from his new sister. I'd love to hear other ideas on fun things we can do to make him feel the day is just as special for him as it is for us.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Nine Weeks Left

I had another ultrasound today and all is going well with this little one. Today when I saw "31 weeks and 1 day" on the computer screen, I realized that this special time with my little girl is almost over. Pretty soon I'll actually get to see her little legs instead of just feeling them.

Getting pregnant with Evan was easy for me, so I think I took the whole experience for granted. This time I appreciate it more and have tried to remember how lucky I am to get to have the experience again.

I love feeling the baby tickle my right hipbone, where she seems to like to snuggle up. Her little face was hiding behind it today, so I couldn't get a good look at her profile. I like when she lets out a sudden kick that makes a thump I can feel on the inside and see from the outside. I love when Evan leans in close to my stomach and talks to the baby and how he asks to snuggle with her from time to time. He loves to kiss her and tickle my belly, then he'll ask me what she is saying. When I give him an answer he'll usually counter with, "But I thought babies can't talk." Whenever he sees something pink he'll tell me he wants to buy it for his sister. When getting him dressed a few weeks ago he told me he was going to buy her pink underwear. He is going to teach her how to jump, how to sign and promises to "swipe" all the sweets from her because babies can't have special treats. I hope he is as interested in and curious about her once she is actually here.

As I savor the last few months of pregnancy, I am also trying to savor my last few months of having one-on-one time with my little guy. I'm sure I've taken for granted how quickly and easily Evan and I can hop in the car and go to the zoo or go to the playground. I'm going to try to spend some time making memories with Evan while it is still just us.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

I'm a Soccer Mom

As of today I am officially a soccer mom. The first soccer practice was a little chaotic and a little disorganized, but a lot of fun! I think someone needs to tell the coach that the bulk of the three year olds in the class don't really know the difference between left and right and they need some explanations of terms like "dribble" and "pass." But I'm sure we'll get there eventually.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Patience, Patience, Patience

There are days when I feel like I could have a lot more patience and be a much better person if I weren't so darn tired. Here's hoping for a good night's sleep!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Breakfast at the Fire Station

I've been spending a lot more time reading blogs lately than writing on my own! I was just checking out some friends' sites to see if there was anything new when I realized how long it had been since I posted!

So much has been going on lately, but most of the pictures from the exciting things (like Evan's birthday party) have yet to be downloaded from my camera. But, I have downloaded some pictures from our breakfast at the fire station. Evan wore his fireman suit jacket (the pants are getting a little too little) and spent the morning pretending he was the fireman.

Here I am. Check out that belly. It is growing by the minute!

After we got home, Evan gave us all a lesson in fire safety.

In case you need subtitles, it starts like this, "When your house is caught on fire, you’re supposed to cheer really loud and talk really loud so we can hear you." We all took turns practicing how we would yell if we were ever trapped in a fire and Evan rescued us. It was a successful mission.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Back to the Crib

Any suggestions on how to handle a little one who has suddenly decided he'd like to sleep in his crib again after two months in a big-kid bed??? Evan has come up with every excuse under the sun why he no longer wants to sleep in his bed in his new room (we moved him into a new room with new furniture and left the baby furniture in Evan's old room). "I hear noises. I need more air. The face on the black cat stuffed animal scares me." I've heard it all in the past few days. Evan's ultimate solution to everything is just to sleep in his old room in his crib. Any ideas???

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Simple Joys From the Weekend

-Getting fish kisses from Evan in the checkout line at the grocery store.

-Mixing up (and eating) a coffee cake for Bryan's birthday breakfast.

-Starting and finishing Saturday with cake.

-Having Bryan home before dinner and Evan's bedtime for two days in a row!

-Enjoying Sunday brunch with a friend and my little guy (who behaved beautifully--even if he did require four trips to the potty).

-Putting Evan to bed tonight, having him tell Bryan there was room for all of us in the bed and hearing him pronounce, "We're a family!"

-Wrapping up two work projects with time to spare.

I showed you mine, now show me yours. What were your simple joys this weekend?

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Expanding Evan's Vocabulary

Today I repeatedly told Evan to get his socks and shoes on so we could go to the store, but he kept playing with his toys. I asked him if he was ignoring me. He stopped playing, looked at me and asked, "What does ignoring mean?"

"It means you hear me but you aren't paying attention to me," I said.

"Oh. Yes--then I'm ignoring you."

On the bright side, he learned a new word AND used it in a sentence.

On the downside, he kept ignoring me and landed himself in a time out. After his two minutes of sitting in front of the fridge were over I told him he needed to apologize to me for not listening.

He gave in and reluctantly said, "I'm sorry for not listening to you." Then he added, "Buuuuuuut, I don't want to go to the store."

However, he did head to the front door and put on his shoes and socks. Poor little guy. I know being two can't be easy, but I wish he wouldn't exert so much will sometimes.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Look What I Learned

Back in June I posted a blog entry about how I felt Evan should "dab it off" after using the potty while Bryan felt strongly that boys don't "dab." Oh the restraint it has taken me not to dab when I see even just one drop of pee on there. I can't tell you how many times I've tried to secretly dab without Evan, or Bryan if he is in the bathroom too, noticing. Then today, Evan went potty and as I was about to help him pull up his underwear he said, "Wait. Look at what Miss C (his preschool teacher) taught me." He reached over, pulled off some toilet paper and dabbed away. He looked so proud as he threw the toilet paper in the potty. I e-mailed Bryan to tell him about the little lesson Miss C has imparted on Evan. He thinks we need to have a talk with her. I'm assuming he means the "we" as in me, but I'm going to let him handle this one all on his own. Plus, I'm a little relieved at the dabbing.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Savoring the Everyday Moments

Today I read a quote that has helped me put the past few weeks in perspective: The days are long but the years are short.

I’ve been struggling with some long days lately as I’ve dealt with the monster snow storms that have shut down the city and kept us indoors and homebound, tried to keep up with work deadlines (two speeches and three feature stories to be exact) without the benefit of childcare (due to school closings from the aforementioned monster storms), and a sweet hubby who hasn’t been home before 10:00 p.m. or to bed before 1:00 a.m. in quite some time (hello busy season). Not to mention a toddler who seems to be developing more free will every single day.

That simple little quote today made me realize, though, just how fast the years do go by. I’m already knee deep in planning Evan’s third birthday party. It seems like just yesterday I was walking into the hospital to have him.

I’m going to try to do a better job of savoring the little moments of joy in the long days we all experience. So, my list of things I want to remember from this week:

The perfect and thoughtful Valentine’s Bryan gave Evan and me first thing Sunday morning. Not to mention the surprise and look of sheer joy on Evan’s face when he opened the new book Bryan gave him (Super Why—Evan’s new favorite cartoon).

Singing the Super Why theme song long after I’d seen the show or put Evan to bed. (If you haven’t heard it, it goes a little something like this… “Hip hip hooray, the super readers save the day.” Repeat about 30 times).

Sharing a glass of lemonade with Evan at his school Valentine’s party.

The sweet hug Evan gave me and how he said, ‘I love you, mommy,’ when I told him I would buy him his very own special can of shaving cream he could use in the bathtub. (May it always be so easy to please him.)

Taking a bath and watching my belly move around as little arms or legs gave some nudges from the inside.

That although I’m the type of mom who will go to bed with dishes still in the sink, I am also the type of mom who will let Evan help me make the cookies, pancakes, scrambled eggs, rice, chicken, etc., no matter how much extra work it makes during the clean-up (and cooking) process.

I forged ahead and met all my deadlines, even if it meant staying up until 1 a.m.

Snuggling with Evan. Snuggling with Bryan.

The ease with which Bryan got Evan to go back to bed around 2:00 this morning. I was quite impressed.

I’m sure there are plenty of other moments I should remember, and they’ll probably come to me as soon as I hit publish. But, these are enough to at least help me keep the big picture in perspective. The years will fly by.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Cabin Fever

It is day six of being snowbound at our house, and I think Evan and I are starting to feel the effects. We received another 12 inches of snow today (thank you, Bryan, for shoveling us out). I think the storms are over for a while. Now we just have to finish digging out. School has been cancelled all week and we haven't gotten mail since Friday. Thank goodness we still have power and cable!

Bryan got out yesterday and went to work--he took our SUV, which meant I was staying put. But, let's be honest. I'm not driving on the ice rinks we're calling our roads even if I wanted to, which I don't. Today we spent a few hours playing with moon sand (and then cleaning up moon sand), baking cookies (and then cleaning up the cookies), reading and playing trains.

Evan quickly pushed aside the princess and dragon molds that came with the moon sand and asked for some bulldozers and wheel loaders.

I think the high point of Evan's day was waiting for the cookies to cool off so he could eat one.

We have also taken the time to play outside in the snow--but only once. I haven't been able to get Evan back out there since our first adventure out.

I hope you are all staying warm! We're doing our best!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Sunshine, Glorious Sunshine

We made it to California and I couldn't be happier with how well my little guy did traveling. It is nice and sunny and warm and Evan is eating up every minute of this weather.

The only problem is that Evan won't sleep--just too much to think about I guess. I tried to be angry with him last night...or should I say this morning...from 1:00 a.m. to 6:00 a.m. when he refused to sleep. He spent at least 45 minutes singing the Star Spangled Banner. When I told him to go back to sleep, he looked at me and said, "I'm just singing." Yes, honey, I know. The biggest threat I could think of was that if he didn't go back to bed he couldn't have a bath today. It sounds ridiculous, but he loves the bathtub in the condo and spent a good three hours in it yesterday. He wouldn't go back to bed, so all day I've sounded like the bath Nazi--"Nope, I told you, no bath for you today." Let's hope he stays fairly clean.

He is napping now and I sure hope the kid will sleep through the night tonight. I need the rest! He is the best little traveler otherwise and I am very proud of how well he is doing. I think he is holding up better than Bryan would have under the circumstances. Just kidding. A little.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Canceling Mickey

I hate to admit it, but I am a Disney fan. I love everything about Disney World from their clever marketing tactics to get you to spend more to every square inch of Epcot. I like the character breakfasts and waiting in line for the rides. I don't even mind paying $8 for lemonade--it is the happiest place on earth after all! You expect to pay a little extra for all of that happiness!

We were planning to take Evan to Disney in March with my parents. I've been talking it up with Evan for months and have already booked our character dining experiences. Plus, I've been dreaming about the filet with macaroni and cheese and red wine sauce that is on the menu at Jico at the Animal Kingdom Lodge (it is the most amazing meal!). But after my visit with my doctor today, we decided that I should limit my travel and try to keep my feet up as much as possible for the next five months.

I think she meant to say, "Keep your feet up with a trashy magazine in hand and be sure your husband prepares all the meals and handles all the cleaning." But I can discuss the technicalities with her later.

Evan coming early was a big surprise. This time around, it looks like it is going to take a little extra effort to keep this one in, so at least I'm prepared for it. I'm going to spend the next few months taking it easy, getting things ready and trying to enjoy every last minute of alone time with Evan. Even on days when a trip to the grocery store with a toddler seems overwhelming, I'm going to remind myself that our special time together as we know it will be changing soon. It is going to be a wonderful change, but a change nonetheless. I'm taking a trip next week, but then I'm clearing my calendar and staying put. It is for a wonderful cause, but I'm trying to figure out how to break the news to Evan that he won't be seeing Mickey Mouse afterall!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

It's a Girl!!!

We had our ultrasound today and Evan's prediction was correct...we're having a baby girl. The baby looks great and there are a few little things with me they'll keep watching to see if we can keep this one from coming early. Whew. Even though I knew it was most likely everything was fine, I definitely breathed a sigh of relief knowing everything looked normal. And, now I can blame my drastic mood swings on the extra female hormones floating through my body. :-)

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Cookies for Santa

On Christmas Eve we let Evan load up a plate of cookies for Santa. He just kept adding cookie after cookie to the pile. After he had more than a dozen on there he decided it would be enough. We put the cookies on the table, grabbed a few pictures and spent some more time hanging out in the living room.

At one point, Bryan reached over and grabbed a cookie off the plate. Just as he was breaking it in half Evan realized what happened.

"Dad!!! Those are for Santa!!!" Evan's voice was filled with frustration, panic and horror all at once. "There aren't going to be enough and we don't have time to make more."

Bryan tried to piece the cookie back together and placed it back on the plate. Evan seemed moderately satisfied, but after he went to bed we couldn't help but laugh about how upset and concerned he was. I loved that he knew there just simply wasn't enough time to make more cookies before he had to go to bed.

Monday, January 4, 2010

The White Jersey

Since October Evan has been telling us he wants a white jersey. He needs a white jersey. How this kid even knows that the Caps wear white jerseys when traveling is beyond me. He is so perceptive. I've been assuring him for months it would happen on Christmas and sure enough, he opened up a white jersey on Christmas morning.

The only problem was that when I promised a white jersey, I didn't realize they don't make them in toddler sizes. According to the multiple people I spoke with at the Caps pro shop, there isn't much demand for toddler size travel jerseys. Apparently those other toddlers aren't real fans. So, Evan received a children's small medium, which came down to his knees. Aunt Maria helped him roll up the sleeves.

For all the excitement leading up to the white jersey, its ill-fitting nature has meant Evan hasn't worn it since Christmas morning. I'm renewing my quest to find a smaller size--one has to exist, somewhere. Until then, we'll tuck this one away.

Since Evan loves white jerseys, he assumed other people on his Christmas list would, too. Here is the jersey he picked out for his daddy.

I'm sure Bryan would have been surprised if Evan hadn't been telling him we'd gotten him a white jersey for the three weeks leading up to Christmas. He spilled the beans the minute we walked in the door from getting it, even though we talked for 20 minutes in the car about how it was a secret and how we weren't going to tell daddy. Then he'd talk about it at random moments--once in the bath and another time just playing cars. I loved how excited he was to give a gift, even if it meant it wasn't a surprise.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Creating a Happy Life

Check out my post on www.mindywrites.com about creating a happy life and my plan to keep a happiness journal this year. Leave a comment there and let me know what it is that makes you the happiest!